Deb Marcano Headshot

I love to travel and take photos. Initially, I took pictures to show friends my adventures. But my first trip to Lalibela, Ethiopia in 1998 transformed my life and work. While there, I met a family and stayed in touch with them. In 2003, when the mother informed me that she was dying, I promised to always take care of her five children and kept my word. When I returned to Lalibela in 2005, I no longer wanted to just take “pretty pictures”. I wanted to show a side of life that most people don’t see – the stunning, natural grace that resonates in the midst of heart-wrenching poverty. The “Lalibela Living” series was exhibited in Portland, Oregon, San Francisco, California and Brooklyn, New York.

After earning Bachelor of Arts and Master of Science degrees in Urban Affairs from Hunter College, I studied photography at the School of Visual Arts and the International Center of Photography in New York, and photography and film at Los Angeles Community College. I fuse my passion for photography and dedication to the urban community by working with socially-conscious organizations – assisting them to showcase their missions.

My narrative short, “Positive Attitude” won the Audience Favorite and Best Comedy awards at the Women of Color Film Festival in New York in 2003 and was screened at over 20 film festivals in the United States, Africa and the Caribbean. That led to my two term appointment by Mayor Bloomberg to the New York City Department of Health’s HIV Planning Council in 2009.

My latest photography series “Diversity In Protest” was displayed at the Grand Army Plaza branch of the Brooklyn Public Library, where I presently volunteer as an Adult Literacy Tutor.

I am a globe trekker and have visited 6 continents and more than 70 countries. I am also an artrepreneur, NAUI-certified advanced scuba diver, teaching artist, storyteller, public speaker, community activist, philanthropist, proud member of the Actors’ Equity Association and SAG-AFTRA unions, and “Mum” of five and “Grandmum” of two in Lalibela.

I live a life full of wonder for which I am truly thankful!